"Temporary" Acolyte?


#1

Does anyone know if there is such a thing as an “extraordinary” acolyte, or some facility for trmporary deputation of an acolyte? I’ve never heard of such a thing but I want to be sure.
I was asked to help purify vessels at Holy Mass, which I know is not licit for a lay person, but before I give a “no” I want to be sure that I am correct in saying there are no circumstances in which it can be licit.


#2

When Pope Paul VI reformed the sacred orders and lay ministries in the early 70s he made provision for lay men to be acolytes. This has never been widely taken up. Men usually only become acolytes on their road to the priesthood or permanent diaconate.

In effect an altar server is a stand in for an acolyte. But, there are two things are acolyte can do which an altar server cannot. First, an acolyte is an ex officio extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. Secondly, an acolyte can purify the vessels.

An altar server might become an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion; however, this would be separate from being an altar server. They’d need to train and be commissioned.

An altar server may never purify the sacred vessels.


#3

[quote="Jamie_Burns, post:1, topic:302424"]
Does anyone know if there is such a thing as an "extraordinary" acolyte, or some facility for trmporary deputation of an acolyte? I've never heard of such a thing but I want to be sure.
I was asked to help purify vessels at Holy Mass, which I know is not licit for a lay person, but before I give a "no" I want to be sure that I am correct in saying there are no circumstances in which it can be licit.

[/quote]

I believe you are in the diocese of Galveston-Houston. Our diocese has actually revived the practice of acolytes other than seminarians. There is a training program sponsored by the diocese. Your pastor can refer you or you can call the chancery and get more information.


#4

There is no such thing as an "extraordinary" acolyte, no. The only persons who may purify vessels are clergy and instituted acolytes. If, as the poster above thinks, your diocese allows men to become instituted acolytes, then you might check in to that. I, for one, would love if my diocese offered it!


#5

[quote="Jamie_Burns, post:1, topic:302424"]
Does anyone know if there is such a thing as an "extraordinary" acolyte, or some facility for trmporary deputation of an acolyte? I've never heard of such a thing but I want to be sure.
I was asked to help purify vessels at Holy Mass, which I know is not licit for a lay person, but before I give a "no" I want to be sure that I am correct in saying there are no circumstances in which it can be licit.

[/quote]

You may write a simple letter to your bishop, requesting the office of acolyte because your pastor is asking you to purify vessels. You might get a positive resolution either way: the bishop gets involved and tells the pastor to obey, or he institutes you an acolyte.

That's what I'd do.


#6

[quote="Corki, post:3, topic:302424"]
I believe you are in the diocese of Galveston-Houston. Our diocese has actually revived the practice of acolytes other than seminarians. There is a training program sponsored by the diocese. Your pastor can refer you or you can call the chancery and get more information.

[/quote]

As a parishioner in one of Galveston-Houston's suffragan dioceses (Brownsville), I must kindly correct you in the most tongue-in-cheek manner...it's the the ARCHDIOCESE.

You folks earned and deserved that promotion. Don't forget it.


#7

[quote="PacoG, post:6, topic:302424"]
As a parishioner in one of Galveston-Houston's suffragan dioceses (Brownsville), I must kindly correct you in the most tongue-in-cheek manner...it's the the ARCHDIOCESE.

You folks earned and deserved that promotion. Don't forget it.

[/quote]

To me, this comes across as a bit cynical. I do not read Corki's post as being negative or sarcastic.


#8

[quote="YoungTradCath, post:7, topic:302424"]
To me, this comes across as a bit cynical. I do not read Corki's post as being negative or sarcastic.

[/quote]

I was kidding. I seriously meant nothing by it. I did not mean it to be cynical.

Those of us in the Galveston-Houston province are proud to have Cardinal DiNardo as our Metropolitan. We were all overjoyed when G-H got promoted to an archdiocese.


#9
 Yes, I am aware that the Archdiocese is commissioning Instituted Acolytes.  I train the EMHC at our parish in Theology of the Most Holy Eucharist and Practicum of the Ministry.  I have not discerned a call to serve as an EMHC (or an Acolyte).  I was told by an Instituted Acolyte here who took my training that my training is actually much more thorough than theirs.
 My situation is more of a "one off", being asked to help for one Sunday.  I don't like being that guy who does not co-operate when asked to help, who always refers to GIRM xxx (#279 in this case) or Canon Law xxxx section xx, or whatever.  Plus, so often when you look something up in the official documents there is a disclaimer "...other than allowed in the appropriate Liturgical Books".
 I only posted here just in case someone might read it who was aware of an approved facility for temporary deputation for pastoral necessity (just as the Celebrant can designate anyone as an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion at any particular Holy Mass when they are needed).

#10

What were the circumstances in which you were asked to purify the sacred vessels? I do believe we should do what our Holy Mother the Church prescribes. And, that is not itended to be a criticism of your actions, just in case there might be any misunderstanding. I wonder why the priest did not do it. While I do not agree with them doing it, I propose it would be more fitting if at the end of Mass if anyone was going to do it other than the priest it would be best if an EMHC did it. Was there no EMHC at the Mass where you purified the sacred vessles? Were you serving the Mass?


#11

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